Saturday, April 9, 2011

April musings

Other than commuting to work not much is happening on the adventure front. This year I am getting a head start on getting my bike ready for multi-day travel. The first thing I purchased was my GiPro Gear Indicator . It's not like I don't know how to change gears BUT I often gear up around town and find my speed creeping up. Now I just keep it in 4th or below.



that it's a nice day and this rider is minding their own business keeping with the flow of traffic without regard to peering at the actual speed. This rider sees a mini-van coming up fast and slaloming back and forth to get ahead of other traffic. Now this rider can't stand the sight of this aggressive driver and also slaloms back and forth to keep ahead, shifting gears along the way with ever increasing speed. Finally there is a backlog of traffic and this rider checks their left mirror and slaloms to the left lane, just as . . . a traffic, motorcycle riding enforcement officer, riding a police issue Harley Davidson happens to look at this particular rider "In the eyes" and immediately turns on this flashers and is in U-turn mode.

Except for the fact that the traffic was very heavy in this officer's direction and he was unable to make a hasty U-turn due to the cement median which separates the opposing lanes. The hesitation in making the U-turn allowed this particular rider to make a quick right turn into a residential area and zig-zag post haste out of the area taking quick evasive action into lanes, parking lots and backtracking until the coast was clear enough to continue onto this rider's original destination and also to avoid this particular area for a few weeks. It is just mere co-incidence that this particular rider was wearing riding attire similar to mine with a black adventure bike to match.

(the engine was idling . . . just in case)

Lately I have been experimenting with adhering to the speed limit and I find that I am the slowest vehicle on the road. Everyone is in a rush to nowhere and I usually catch up at the next signal light anyway.

(V-strom without saddle bags)

The other morning I was running late for my commute to work and I forgot to connect my side cases. I felt nude without them. It's sort of the same feeling as forgetting your wallet, only worse. We have a two car carport and my bike is very wide with both cases on. If I am the last one home I have to detach the cases to squeeze between two cars to get to the carport in the rear. I feel safer with a larger footprint, thus I ride all the time with the sidecases . It also gives me more storage options if I want to buy anything on the way home. Each case can hold my 3/4 helmet

(Fully farkled Kawasaki Versys)

The other day after work I rode my bike over to 2nd Gear, whom recently moved to a larger location. They sell used bikes and other accessories. I was looking for a larger magnetic tank bag. They are a Twisted Throttle distributer and this was where I ordered my Madstat windshield bracket. I also wanted to install highway pegs but it seems that there is nothing that can be used with my GIVI crashbars. I was thinking of changing over to Mototech but I will see if I can get one custom made first.


They have a very nice selection of pre-owned bikes. I could fancy myself on the Ducati, or . . .


this very nice Honda VFR 800 which had been meticulously cared for by a Doctor. Comes complete with factory side cases and ready for touring . (Psst: SonjaM, there is also a cheap Vespa GT200 here for a very good price)

In British Columbia we have Government mandatory insurance. We are able to purchase excess coverage from private insurers so I require two policies. One for basic through ICBC: Insurance Corporation of BC, and my excess through Beacon for specific motorcycle coverage, thus I had to renew my excess coverage. Of course we only do this for the tremendous savings as they only insure better than average risks.

I went down to see my insurance agent Paul, who is also a Concours rider and found a suitable space to park my bike. My left foot has flared up again and I am hobbling around, barely able to walk. I think I aggravated it by wearing my ill fitting motorcycle boots as that's all I can think of. It was murder trying to push the clutch on my commuter car so riding the bike was easier and less painful. I am going to have to find another pair of boots with a lower profile and perhaps one increment wider.


Last week I rode past these cement pipes and thought it would be neat to pose my V-strom, but looking at the results it doesn't seem like a good idea


The light was better last week. Today it is cloudy, overcast and more dreary looking

A couple of weeks ago I met someone who was restoring a Honda CB350. He had ordered some tires on the internet and was having them installed on his classic spoked rims. I remembered that I had a virtually, brand new, unused Clymer's repair manual on my shelf which I offered to give to him. I have had this manual for nearly 30 years and I am glad it is going to a good home. It was the third printing 1979 . I told him I wanted to hand it to him personally so we met at EMS and I thought the red bench accessorized with the red Yamaha


It also came with a tachometer


I'm not a mechanic but I was thinking that one day, when I retire I should find a project to work on to keep occupied. Either that or an Airhead as I will have more time than money


Friend:(at breakfast last week) "How's your new TV working ? "

Me: "Still sitting in my hallway since Christmas (Dec 26th)"

F: "You mean no one has come to take away your old TV ? "

Me: "Nope"

F: "Okay, I'll come on Monday after work with my Son"


So after nearly 3-1/2" months my old TV got taken away and I don't have to trip over it anymore in the hallway. I managed to drag the new box over to the old TV stand


and a short time later we plugged it in and now we get to see moving pictures . The picture isn't as bad as we thought. It is a 1080p resolution but we do not yet have HD service installed. There are a few choices before we decide upon a provider or whether we go satellite. So for now we are viewing it as standard definition. We would not have purchased this new TV but for the fact that our old Toshiba going on the Fritz with the picture often blacking out with "no picture".


This model can be connected to the internet either wired, or wirelessly via the optional dongle, without a computer


Gas Report:


equals: $5.136 per US Gallon (3.785 litres/us gal)


I'll end with a photo from False Creek showing the retractable roof of our stadium being installed



  1. Hi Bob,
    actually 2nd Gear is next on our list ;-)
    The shot with your Wee on the train tracks seems very daring. I like it!
    Like you I didn't have much time for adventurous riding lately.
    Sorry to hear about the flaring up of your joint. I hope you will feel better soon.

  2. Maybe that law enforcement Harley rider wanted to admire pink crocs!

    We live on a hill. Many times I get behind a slowpoke going uphill. I get bored so I start a slow weave back and forth to practice dodging road debris. Of course they don't know that's what I'm doing and a police officer wouldn't either. Sometimes I wonder if I'll get in trouble for reckless riding.

    I like the shot on the tracks too. Those kind of shots say something beyond just a photo.

    Your post reminds me to ride somewhere without my side cases. I've never done that on my bike. The one I test rode didn't have the cases on.

    I hope your foot gets better. Take care, Bob!

  3. Bobskoot...interesting coincidence that, a wee-strom rider with same color motorcycle and same riding jacket as you....running from a LEO.

    I recently have learned as well that its best to keep one's time near the tracks of a RR crossing down to the absolute minimum.


    Redleg's Rides

    Colorado Motorcycle Travel Examiner

  4. lol - love the image with the bike on the tracks, but I don't think I'll try it! I'm sure I'd get so nervous if a train came along, that I'd drop the bike right there. Great image though. I like the industrial backdrop. (That goes for the first image as well). Funny how industrial locations make such interesting subjects.

    Great story of the rider using evasive action from the Police officer on a HD. Of course we'd never suspect you, despite the bike description...the rider description...pure coincidence I'm sure. I wonder if Vancouver's finest read this blog?

    I agree with you on the culverts. The V-strom gets kind of lost amongst all the circles. Sure looks like an intriguing subject, and I suspect there is a image in there somewhere that works. I like the repetitive circles in and out, but how to get the bike to stand out? The red bench and Yamaha, is a nice effective image. Almost like it has a secret story to tell.

    Sorry to hear your foot is bothering you again. I hope all is better soon. Nothing more annoying than injuries that effect mobility.

  5. Bob:
    I assume that the similarly-attired rider was a younger fella who was clearly less mature than you. You'd never rise to such provocation, would you???

    Hope that your food mends quickly mate, not the sort of thing you want just before summer. Best wishes...

  6. Great pics, especially the VFR! I would love to have one, if I didn't have such old wrists...

  7. SonjaM:

    I was riding around last weekend but mainly doing errands. This Saturday I have an appointment for new tyres. The original forecast was for rain so that's why I planned for it, but now the forecast has changed to sun. Too bad too as the Bellingham group is doing a daffodil ride to LaConner on Saturday.


    The sidecases are part of my Frame Slider system, it felt funny without the added protection. I thought to myself, "Now I can do some lane-splitting" if only it were allowed here


    The tracks weren't that active, but I left the engine running "just in case", with my luck you just never know


    Thank you for your best wishes. My doctor is useless, this has happened before and all she prescribed was some Celebrex. They didn't work last time, nor this time. I did some google searches and I am going to heal myself with what I think is wrong.


    Never fails, just when the weather is changing for the better, I am now riding "challenged" . I can't even drive my car. It's a 5 speed and it hurts just to push the clutch down. My super scooter would have been perfect, but I don't own it anymore


    If the VFR was less expensive, I may have considered it for a "spare"

  8. Looks like you've had a pretty good run at April already, that's good news. I'm up to somewhere between 1,200 and 1,400 miles for the month, which I think is pretty damned respectable.

    I always feel like a bus coming down the road with my side cases on. I understand what you're saying about visibility, though. I feel like I'll be seen on my new Concours, where on my little BMW I never had that feeling.

    Keep riding.

    Behind Bars - Motorcycles and Life

  9. I think the culverts are definitely a great image. Maybe getting lower to the ground and having the bike facing the camera? Round culverts, round headlights, reducing the bulk of the bike in the image and only replacing one culvert in the backdrop?

    Shame on that other rider dressed like you and riding too fast and evading police. Gonna give you a bad name.

    Love the bridge supports in the last image. Could be some good images there too.